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Full text of "An oration delivered in Newbern, North Carolina, before the Twenty-fifth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers, July 4, 1862"

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AN 



ORATION 



DELIVERED IN 



NEWBERN, NORTH CAROLINA, 



BEFORE THE 



TWENTY-FIFTH REGIMENT 



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MASSACHUSETTS VOLUNTEERS, 



JULY 4, 1862. 



BY 



Rev. HORACE JAMES, Chaplain. 



BOSTON 1 : 

"W. F. BROWN & C O., PRINTERS, 

No. 15 Comhill. 






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AN 



ORATION 



DELIVERED IN 



NEWBERN, NORTH CAROLINA, 



BEFORE THE 



TWENTY-FIFTH REGIMENT 

MASSACHUSETTS VOLUNTEERS, 
JULY 4, 1862. 

BY 

Rev. HORACE JAMES, Chaplain. 



BOSTON : 

PRINTED BY W. F. BROWN & CO., No. 15 CORNHILL. 

186 2. 



25th Regiment Mass. Volunteers, 
Newbern, N. C, July 4th, 1862. 

Rev. Horace James, Chaplain 25th Mass. Volunteers. 

Dear Sir : — The undersigned had the pleasure, on this our National 
Anniversary, of hearing an address delivered by you before the Regiment, 
and Citizens of Newbern. 

We are induced by a desire to refer again to the principles therein 
taught — to its elevated tone and pure patriotism — to the peculiarities of our 
surroundings while sustaining by force of arms the doctrines of the " Decla- 
ration " among those who, bound equally with us in solemn compact, are with 
traitorous hands striving to despoil the heritage bequeathed by our fathers, 
and build upon its ruins a government for personal aggrandizement, and to 
perpetuate injustice and oppression ; — in behalf of ourselves and friends, to 
request a copy of the Address for publication. 

We are, very respectfully yours, 

A. B. R. Sprague, Lieut. -Col. 25th Reg't Mass. Vol. 
Josiah Pickett, Major 

E. A. Harkness, Adjutant 
Wm. O. Brown, Quartermaster 
O. Moulton, Captain 
C. G. Attwood, " 
J. W. Denny, " 
Thomas O'Niel, " 
Louis Wagely, " 

F. E. Goodwin, " 
William Emery, " 
James Tucker, Lieut. 
William F. Draper, " 
Henry McConville, " 
William Daley, " 
Levi Lawrence, " 
N. H. Foster, " 
Arthur P. Forbes, " 
M. B. Bessey, " 
J. B. Smith, " 
John W. Davis, " 



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Newbern, N. C, July 4th, 1862. 
Gentlemen : 

Your request is cheerfully granted. Irrespective of any merit in the 
Address, which must needs be small under the circumstances, it may be, in 
a printed form, a pleasant memento to the soldiers of this Regiment, and to 
their friends. Not often has it happened to New England men to celebrate 
our national anniversary upon soil recovered from insurrection by the Union 
arms. 

Being unwilling that the occasion should pass by without appropriate ob- 
servances, the 25th did what they could, by public oration and evening illu- 
minations, to reproduce the impressions of other years, and make the day 
memorable. In obedience to your wishes, grateful for the terms in which 
they are expressed, the accompanying manuscript is submitted to you, and 
respectfully dedicated to the 25th Mass. Regiment, by their true and faith- 
ful friend, 

THE CHAPLAIN. 



To 



Lieut.-Col. A. B. R. Sprague, 
Major Josiah Pickett, 
Adj't. E. A. Harkness, 
Quartermaster Wm. O. Brown, 
Capt. O. Moulton, 

" C. G. Attwood, 

" J. W. Denny, 

" Thomas O'Neil, 

" Louis Wagely, 

" F. E. Goodwin, 

" William Emery, 



Lieut. James Tucker, 

'• Wm. F. Draper, 

" Henry McConville, 

" William Daley, 

" Levi Lawrence, 

" N. H. Foster, 

" Arthur P. Forbes, 

" M. B. Bessey, 

" J. B. Smith, 

" John W. Davis. 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2012 with funding from 

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http://www.archive.org/details/orationdeliveredOOjame 



ORATION. 



Friends, Fellow-Citizens, and Soldiers of the Army of 
the United States : — 

I bid you welcome to the festivities of this hour. 
With emotions of profound gratitude to God, the Au- 
thor of liberty and Arbiter of destiny, we celebrate an- 
other birth-day of the Great American Kepublic. 

Looking reverently and affectionately upon her face, 
yet fair and fresh in national youth, we seem to hear 
her exclaim in the words of one of her gifted sons, " I 
still live ! " aye, though rent with faction, burdened with 
debt, involved in war, her plains whitened with military 
encampments, her very soil furrowed with shot and 
dank with human gore, while treason is still unsubdued 
and defiant over a portion of her domain ; she doth lift 
up her voice with strength, and summon her children, in 
prouder, clearer tones than ever, to assemble together 
and kneel with patriotic devotion around her altar. 

From our hearts we obey ; for we love our country, 
and because of that love for her we are here. We are 
the constituted guardians of her honor. We bear with 
us the assurance of her integrity, and are appointed to 



8 

see that she receives no detriment. We recognize no 
South, no North, no West, no East, as a separate interest. 
We know nothing but our Country, however bounded, 
by whomsoever governed ; our Country one and insepa- 
rable ; our Country guided by the great principles of 
liberty and law, which were inwrought by skillful hands 
into her admirable constitution, which have shaped her 
institutions, inspired her struggles, and are to be still 
more grandly illustrated in her future history. 

We meet to-day upon soil reclaimed to the Union by 
our victorious arms, in a city where one year ago there 
was no public recognition of our nation's independence, 
where no peal of bells or salvo of cannon ushered in 
the festal morning ; but a wretched cluster of waning 
meteors and three dismal bars disgraced the heavens, 
and a misguided people and an army in open rebellion 
against the government, contemptuously derided the 
dignity and sovereignty of the United States. 

Thank God ! the Old Flag flutters again in the breeze 
along these shores and waters. In every one of the 
thirty-four States the " star spangled banner " floats 
proudly to-day. The work of recovery goes bravely on. 
A series of brilliant successes by land and water is just 
about to culminate in a battle before the rebel capitol, 
which will decide the fate of the southern " Confed- 
eracy," and virtually end this wicked war. 

So we hope. Meanwhile, summoned at such a time as 
this to the consideration of our country's interests and 
dangers, may we not appropriately review the great 
Rebellion and War now upon our hands, and compare it 



with the former or revolutionary struggle of 1776, in 
respect to its Origin, Characteristics, and Probable Re- 
sults ? My plan of thought, on the present occasion, 
will lead in this direction. 

The wars of 1776 and 1861 are entitled to be called 
the two great Wars of America. In respect to the magni- 
tude of the interests involved, the numerical strength of 
the forces engaged, and their absorbing power over the 
public mind and heart, no other struggles that have oc- 
curred in this hemisphere are equal to them. One of 
them is finished, and has passed into history. The other 
is incomplete as yet. It has, however, sufficiently re- 
vealed its character to convince all reflecting men that 
its influence will continue long after its scenes have 
transpired, and be an important element in the solution 
of great social questions, affecting the interests of man- 
kind. 

In these two struggles the belligerents have belonged 
to the same race — Anglo-Saxons fought against Anglo- 
Saxons in the last century, and the same is true now. 
We are said to be engaged in "a civil ivar" and in a very 
senseless manner some have rung the changes upon the 
barbarity and wickedness of such a war. So was the war 
of '76 a civil war. It was one of brother against brother, 
and sire against son. The British realm and its trans- 
Atlantic colonies were but one household. Yet English- 
men were not then affected with holy horror in view of 
its being a fratricidal strife. The truth is that " a civil 
war " may be as justifiable and as necessary as a foreign 
war. The moral quality of such a strife cannot be de- 
cided by questions of race and descent. 



10 

Both these wars commenced in rebellion. The patriot of 
the revolution was no less a "rebel" than the secessionist 
of the present day. Those who for any reason throw off 
the obligations of allegiance to the supreme power, are 
"rebels" in the eye of the law. Whether they shall 
continue to be branded with this epithet depends partly 
upon the justice of their cause, but more upon their 
success. Rebellion in its early stages is treason ; after its 
firm establishment in power it is patriotism and glory. 
The rebellion of '76 passed on triumphantly to the latter 
stage. That of '61 seems unlikely to do so. Unsup- 
ported by the recognition of a single member of the 
family of nations, and giving but doubtful evidence of 
ability to maintain itself anywhere, it leads as yet the 
life of a vagabond, its Ishmaelitish hand against every 
man and every man's hand against it. Whether it shall 
enjoy any honorable history, or stand upon the record as 
anything more than a monstrous political apostacy of 
immense pretensions, but of proven impotence, remains 
to be seen, and will be speedily determined. It must 
work out its own salvation, and make its anniversary a 
nation's gala day, as the first great rebellion has done, 
or else sink, an execrated thing, beneath the world's no- 
tice and contempt. There is no intermediate state for it 
between a political heaven or hell. 

A resemblance between these two wars is perceivable 
in the variety of individual opinion which prevails respecting 
them. In the era of 1776, there were conservative and 
radical men, extremists on both sides of the agitating 
questions of that day, as we see it to be now. This must 



11 

continue to be the case so long as men are born with 
varying temperaments, and educated to varying tastes. 
That the community should be divided into upholders of 
the American Union and seceders from it, is perhaps no 
more strange than that there should have been " whigs " 
and " tories " in the revolutionary war. In every State 
there are secret sympathizers with the enemy. We may 
expect that Union principles will spring up in the steps 
of our victorious armies. They will not declare themselves 
to any extent except under the gleam of our bayonets 
and the protection of our flag. Upon their spontane- 
ous utterance we cannot depend. As little can we 
depend upon the patriotism of a small party in the 
loyal States, the moment that any reverse is ex- 
perienced by the national arms. There is even a little 
clique in the Congress at Washington, contemptible in- 
deed in numbers, but unscrupulous, artful, practiced in de- 
bate and in legislative strategy, represented by an Ohio 
member of ineffable name, who show clearly enough by 
all their votes and speeches that they would establish 
the Southern Confederacy if they had the power to do 
it with impunity. They are traitors to the Constitution 
and as worthy of political punishment as the tories of 
the old revolution. 

Selfishness, alas ! in the forms of personal ambition, 
and the cursed greed of gain, are found hanging like 
vampyres upon the throat of the best enterprises, suck- 
ing the life-blood of the nation, and outraging the moral 
sentiment of mankind. Patrick Henry gave such men 
the benefit of his keen satire in the old war. Washing- 



12 

ton felt indignant at their baseness ; but the degenerate 
race survives. Wolves in sheep's clothing, wretches who 
can pierce their country to the heart under the guise of 
friendship, who can assume the livery of the court of 
heaven to serve the devil in, base enough to make mer- 
chandise of a distressed and perplexed nation, to grow 
rich upon contracts that have defrauded a too-confiding 
government, and imperilled her most important military 
movements. The curse of heaven rest upon their ill- 
gotten stores ! the profits of their shoddy cloth and their 
rotten meat ! May their riches become corrupted, their 
garments be moth-eaten, and the hard earnings of the 
common soldier which they have taken away by fraud, 
cry out against them before offended heaven. 

In refreshing contrast with the acts of mercenary con- 
tractors and jobbers who have been developed in such 
large numbers during this contest, is the self-denying 
spirit, and cheerful endurance of suffering which have to such 
an extent characterized this war. It falls not behind the 
old revolutionary struggle in respect to these high 
qualities. On both sides men with families have left 
their happy peaceful homes, at short notice, uttered a 
hurried farewell as they kissed away the falling tears, 
and departed to the seat of war, not knowing, not once 
thinking, whether they should ever return. Exile has 
been cheerfully borne, the privations of the camp, the 
dangers of the field, the discomforts of the hospital. 
On both sides these have been endured, in many cases 
by those who suffered deservedly, but with a heroism 
worthy of a better cause ; all tending to show that the 



■ 



13 

self-sacrificing spirit of the revolutionary heroes is still 
extant in their descendants. The race of patriots is 
not extinct. By tens and hundreds of thousands they 
may be enumerated among the officers and enlisted 
volunteers of the Union army ; and in large numbers, I 
doubt not, among the rank and file of the Confederate 
forces. We will not claim that all the personal virtue, 
as well as the justice of the war, is on our side. Among 
those arrayed against us, and against their country, are 
many doubtless, who with mistaken zeal think them- 
selves doing God service. Their treason is the result 
of a defective education, of degrading social institutions, 
and a blind confidence in leaders who are basely and 
with lying lips misleading them to their ruin. It is 
one of the wicked things of this war that so many 
men with honest intentions are fighting under a mis- 
apprehension of the facts ; fighting bravely, but with a 
lie in their right hands. A terrible responsibility rests 
upon the souls of those few men who have plunged them 
into this strife, and by pertinacious and unblushing men- 
dacity are still nurturing within them a hostile spirit. 
Let but a few hundreds of ambitious demagogues at the 
South be slain or hanged, let that oligarchy of non-pro- 
ducing aristocrats that have taught the South to hate the 
North, that have made labor despicable, and viewed our 
mechanism as an ignominy and a degradation ; let these 
few rich slaveholders, in short, who have shrewdly man- 
aged to usurp and wield the power of these States, and 
of the General Government as well ; — let but these un- 
easy plotters of sedition be somehow disposed of, and 



14 

their influence neutralized, and the masses of the people 
North and South, East and West, would rush into each 
other's arms, would flow together like water ; and when 
they had done so, the very floods would clap their hands ! 

There are several points of striking unlikeness between 
the rebellion of 1776, which resulted in the American 
Union, and the rebellion of 1861, whose precise destiny has 
not yet been reached. It may better illustrate the spirit 
of each of them to present these points briefly in vivid 
contrast. 

They were greatly dissimilar in respect to their state- 
ment of justifying causes. No political document that was 
ever penned has echoed around the world more sublimely 
than the Declaration of American Independence. Its 
very words are hallowed and classic to the lover of po- 
litical liberty, as they fall so clearly, so convincingly 
upon the ear. The cause must needs prevail that was 
thus supported by facts, by arguments, by appeals to the 
common sense and sound judgment of mankind. That 
Declaration alone was worth to the patriot cause an army 
of one hundred thousand men. The people that could so ex- 
press their grievances and their rights as they stood at the 
world's judgment bar, were and of right ought to be, a 
free and independent people. The government that 
had so abused them had forfeited all claim to exercise 
authority over them. 

Examine now the annals of the seceded States and 
of the so-called Confederate Government, and what is 
their statement of justifying causes for the steps they 
have taken? I admit the abstract right of revolution. 



15 

But the reasons must be good and sufficient, and the 
statement of them must be clear and distinct. For 
any such statement in justification of the present re- 
bellion we look in vain. The real reasons which 
prompted it are artfully concealed, and those openly 
rendered are indefinite and unworthy. We find in them 
no lack of appeals to heaven to witness their sincerity, 
such as a devout Arab might make who intended to com- 
mit robbery the next hour ; but we fail to find in them 
any appeal which is adapted to convince the sound 
judgment of mankind. They have jumbled together a 
verbose and specious justification of their course, in which 
imagination is largely drawn upon to supply the lack of 
facts, and upon such a flimsy platform they have con- 
cluded to go before the world. Their declaration has« 
convinced no one, for it declared nothing, and done 
them no good, for it had no force. Bearing a faint 
resemblance in form to the famous document of Thomas 
Jefferson, it is so devoid of any spirit kindred to it, as to 
attract no observation from any quarter. 

Totally unlike, also, have been these two movements in 
their pervading principle and spirit. Our fathers strove for 
simple liberty. Resistance to oppression, not fancied, but 
real and persistent, was the one impulse that animated 
them. They had no wish, at first, for separation from 
the mother country, and no lofty aspirations for power. 
Had their just demands been acceded to, the American 
Revolution might have been postponed until now, and the 
British throne be still the center of our allegiance. But 
taxes without representation, the Boston Port Bill, the 



16 

Stamp Act, and other outrageous feats of legislation, to- 
gether with the intolerable insolence of royal governors 
from Hutchinson of Massachusetts, to Tryon of North Car- 
olina, were more than they could bear. And when their 
cup of oppression was full, they thrust it indignantly from 
them and dashed it to the ground. 

What is the animating principle of the present rebel- 
lion ? I hesitate not to pronounce it the lust of dominion. 
The Southern States were willing to remain connected 
with the Union so long as they could rule it. By their 
superior political tactics, and by taking advantage of 
divided and nearly balanced parties at the North, they 
have had control of the General Government through 
most of its administrations, having placed either South- 
ern men, or Northern men with Southern principles, in 
the executive chair. Thus have the few contrived to 
outwit the many, and an oligarchy has long governed 
the country through the forms of republicanism. It was 
not until this scepter was seen to be departing, in the 
election of a Northern President, uncommitted to the 
support of their peculiar institutions, that a remedy for 
this loss of power was discovered in secession. If they 
could no longer rule, they determined to ruin the gov- 
ernment of their fathers, and set up another which 
should be wholly their own. So long had they been 
"masters of the situation," that they could brook no 
change, even though it came in a regular way, and 
gave the Northern States no particle of power or influ- 
ence that was not rightly theirs by the Constitution. That 
instrument had been kept by them inviolate. Contrary 



17 

to their own moral convictions, the Northern people had 
held to the original bond, and even permitted a Southern 
interpretation of that instrument to prevail, merely for 
the sake of peace. But the Southern oligarchy, accus- 
tomed to rule, had pressed their demands so boldly and 
so far that the North could endure it no longer. So 
they elected for once a President of the majority, and 
said to the minority, "It is now your duty to yield." 
This is the head and front of their offending. Yet for 
this cause they have passed the ordinance of secession. 
For this cause they have inaugurated a new revolution. 
For this cause they fired upon Fort Sumter ; for this 
cause they have already shed the blood of thirty thou- 
sand freemen. 

And in this respect, in the two contests, the facts ap- 
pear to be reversed. The weaker party are now the 
oppressors, and lofty pretenders to power and place. 
Eight millions are attempting to lord it over twenty 
millions. The Secessionists of the present day, are the 
British of the past, and hence their English proclivities 
are easy to be accounted for. The North is now where 
the struggling colonies were in the olden time, doing 
battle for liberty against oppression, for democracy 
against aristocracy, for right against organized, pam- 
pered, overbearing, irascible ivrong. As the foreign foe 
in those days looked with contempt upon the raw, undis- 
ciplined troops of the colonists, and insultingly dared 
them to mortal combat, so have the haughty Southrons 
looked upon the people of the commercial North, and 
deemed them, with all their wealth and resources, only 

2 



18 

the mud-sills of society, an inferior people, a cowardly 
horde, who would be scattered like chaff whenever they 
should draw their puissant swords. Not the least re- 
semblance can we discover, in spirit or principle, between 
our revolutionary fathers and the revolutionists of this 
day. Even if the latter should be successful as the 
former were, they would establish that tyranny which 
the others attempted to destroy, and destroy forever 
that noble fabric of freedom which the others erected 
with consummate wisdom, and cemented with their 
blood. 

Not more unlike have been these two rebellions in 
the spirit that animated them, than in the previous prepa- 
ration that was made for them. Our early patriots were 
found totally destitute of the materials for carrying on 
a great war. A conflict at arms had not entered into 
their calculations, and a state of actual hostility found 
them but poorly provided with all the needful muni- 
tions and stores. They rushed into the earlier engage- 
ments with their rusty fowling-pieces and their home- 
made powder-horns. In the battle of Bunker Hill, in 
which the enemy confessed a loss of one thousand and 
fifty-four men out of two thousand engaged, the scanty 
allowance of each of our soldiers was only a gill of pow- 
der, two flints, and fifteen balls not made into cartridges. 
The patriot army was fed, armed, and paid only by 
the superhuman exertions of Washington and his asso- 
ciates, in the face of overwhelming difficulties, with 
neither means nor credit at command, and with abso- 
lutely nothing previously provided. 



19 

Not so the rebellion of 1861. This jumped into being 
fat and flourishing from the hoarded savings of I know 
not how many years. Its leading spirits, fed at the 
public tables, transacting the public business, living with 
their hands in the public treasury, had been carefully 
laying for a long time the train that was to be exploded 
at a fitting moment, and do the work of a generation in 
an hour. While the country, busy and confiding, pur- 
sued its career of prosperity, never dreaming of danger, 
Toucey was sending the ships of the navy on useless ex- 
peditions to the ends of the earth, Floyd was stealing 
guns from all the Northern arsenals, and amassing them 
at various points in the South, Cobb was tampering with 
the credit of the United States, and bringing its fiscal 
affairs into a state of utter confusion. Parties in the in- 
terest of the divisive movement, and acting under secret 
instructions, were moving in all directions with intense 
activity, doing everything possible to bind the hands 
and weaken the power of the General Government, and 
to make everything ready so that their warlike confed- 
eracy might leap into being, Minerva-like and fully 
armed, from the head of the old Republic, and deal at 
her birth, a death-blow to her si^e. Thus have the rebels 
of the seceded States been plotting, preparing, amassing, 
and dividing the spoils, robbing, plundering, and stealing, 
through the connivance or sympathy of their Northern 
abettors, until it came near to proving the utter destruc- 
tion of the American State. One cannot contemplate 
this particular chapter of our nation's history without 



20 

an involuntary shudder. We were on the brink of ruin. 
Our capitol was almost in the hands of an armed enemy; 
and for a few weeks the great republic, paralyzed and 
powerless, had only a name to live ! It becomes us to 
acknowledge, at this happy hour, with profound gratitude 
to God, the special providential care which guided us 
through that dark period, and delivered the nation 
from those perjured and malignant men. Nothing 
but their execution upon the gallows will ever atone 
for their crimes. May the memory of them perish from 
the earth ! 

As the two contests I have named differed so essen- 
tially in respect to previous preparation, it was to be 
expected that they would differ also in fortunes of the 
field. And so indeed it occurred. The earlier experi- 
ences of the revolutionary patriots were defeats. As the 
war progressed, and the resources of the colonial army 
were increased, victory began to perch upon their stand- 
ards. But the confederate cause, of late afflicted with 
defeat upon defeat, in one long and almost unbroken 
series, commenced with successes. The army of tyranny 
in each case advanced strong and defiant in the beginning. 
But they did their best in the first impulsive onset. The 
forces of freedom were amassed more slowly, but when 
once trained in the field, and arrayed for the strife, their 
cool, determined progress swept all before them. A 
causeless rebellion, though prospered at the start, must 
expire in disgrace. But the forces that contend for 
liberty and law, though worsted, it may be, in the first 



21 

assault, will return with increased strength and con- 
fidence to the fight, until they proudly survey the field 
as conquerors. 

The two great struggles which we are attempting to 
compare, have had but little resemblance to one another 
in the number of troops engaged in them. Then our whole 
population was three millions, now it may be thirty-three 
millions. Then we might have had an army of fifty 
thousand ; now it exceeds five hundred thousand. The . 
decisive actions of Saratoga and Yorktown in the Ameri- 
can revolution, look puny beside the battles of Manassas, 
Shiloh, Fair Oaks, and Richmond. 

The expenses incurred furnish another item of striking 
comparison. Six years of warfare with Great Britain 
did not equal, I think, the expenses of a single year of 
war for the Union. But then we had no navy, no 
river or harbor defences, no iron-clads nor Monitors. Our 
fathers crept timidly along according to the then preva- 
lent modes of warfare, and were as ignorant of a rifled 
cannon, or a balloon reconnoissance, and indeed of a tele- 
graphic message, a steam transport, a railroad supply 
train, a rubber blanket, a percussion cap, or a Minie ball, 
as were the old Romans of gunpowder and daily papers. 
The difference of the two eras, in celerity of movements 
and brilliancy of exploits, by reason of the great inven- 
tions and improvements of modern science, is immense, 
and to us scarcely conceivable. True indeed, river piles, 
chevaux de frise, torpedoes, and infernal machines, do not 
always stop the progress of invading fleets and armies, as 



22 

our own experience testifies ; but the appliances of 
science and skill, when rightly and promptly employed, 
offer an immense advantage in the prosecution of war, 
not less indeed than in the pursuits of peace. 

What will be the effect of this conflict in developing 
character, and raising up great men, remains to be proved. 
After the former struggle had ceased, we were enabled 
to gaze reverentially upon a band of heroes, such as the 
world had never seen. " There were giants in those 
days." George Washington, John Adams, Patrick Henry, 
Roger Sherman, John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin, Alex- 
ander Hamilton — what names are these, and such as 
these ! Their pure patriotism, their exalted wisdom, their 
guiding counsels shaped events for ages. To no set of 
men since the apostles of Jesus, has so much been com- 
mitted ; of none can it be said that they so faithfully re- 
stored their trust. When one looks upon those departed 
heroes, and is affected with feelings but little short of 
adoration towards them, he is inclined to ask the ques- 
tion: Will this great national crisis call forth another 
generation of like minded patriots ? When deliverance 
has come to our whole land, and she shall again enjoy 
peace with righteousness, shall we be able to encircle 
with unfading rays the names of our deliverers, and en- 
shrine them with our revolutionary sires, in the national 
Pantheon ? I would fain hope so. This rebellion will 
furnish its name of infamy to complete the trio of treason 
and perfidy, so that Judas, and Arnold, and Floyd, may 
forever sink to their own place in company. Will it not 



23 

also add the names of Ellsworth, and Greble, and Wintkrop, 
and Lyon, and Lander, and JEllett, and many others yet 
living, to the roll of patriots whom the nation will delight 
to honor ! It is, my fellow-citizens, a privilege to live in 
such a day as this, for it brings immortality within the 
grasp of every man. 

I hasten to inquire, what are to be the results of this re- 
bellion and war of 1861 and 1862. I do not claim to be a 
prophet, with power to foretell events that are as yet 
concealed among the mysteries of Providence ; but will 
speak of results as in my own view they ought to take 
place, provided this wretched insurrection shall be every 
where effectually checked and suppressed. And among 
them will be, first and foremost, a Union restored, estab- 
lished, and purified. I say restored. No soldier in the 
army, or in the navy of the United States, and no loyal 
citizen at home, is willing to accept anything short of a 
union perfectly restored. Not one square foot of its ter- 
ritory can be given up, even if it were upon the plains 
of Deseret, or among the dreary sands of Hatteras. 
The principle of dismemberment cannot be allowed for a 
moment. The great rivers and mountain chains of North 
America, with their system of valleys and streams, are 
adapted to one and only one people. Secession is a 
violation of the physical laws impressed upon the face 
of this continent, as well as of the fundamental laws of 
the republic. As a doctrine, it must perish in infancy, 
and sleep in the grave never to rise again. All the ter- 
ritory now under insurrectionary rule must be restored, 



24 

till there is seen but one national flag, one capitol, one 
currency, one congress, and one executive, and all the 
machinery of the confederate government, with its exec- 
utive officers and their unfinished projects are swept into 
oblivion. As sure as there is a sun in the heavens, our 
conquering armies will not furl their banners nor sheathe 
their swords, until the union of North American States 
is perfectly restored from the gulf to the lakes, and 
from sea to sea. 

And when restored it must be established. Not set up 
like Dagon to fall upon its face again, but planted so 
deeply that no tempest of passion can prostrate it, no 
lightnings rive its root, no floods undermine its deep 
foundations. This must be the last experiment of the 
kind. Secession is too expensive a luxury to enjoy a 
second time. When our government has reasserted and 
established its sway over the whole land, it must stand 
strong as the pillars of Hercules, no element of weak- 
ness being left in it, no plague spot upon its fair exterior 
to spread around its foul contagion. 

Aye, we aim at a union purified. It does not wholly 
satisfy us that its integrity is to be maintained ; we long 
to see it improved and strengthened in every element 
that enters into material greatness. Why should our 
dear republic be exempted from the great law of 
growth ? If it be not altogether perfect yet, in God's 
name let it go onward to perfection. Why fetter it in 
its uprising ? Why stint and limit an organization so 
superior ; so freighted with sublime possibilities, so well 



2fS 

fitted, as experience shows, to shed a blessed light upon 
i the nations that sit in darkness, and be an element of 
hope to the world ? 

There are those who exclaim, " give us the ' union as it 
was' " It was indeed a glorious union before, but we want 
it grander, purer, stronger, every way. After passing 
through such a baptism of suffering and blood, should it 
not become possessed of a higher sanctity ? God forbid 
that our national afflictions should fail to be improved, or 
be the means of hardening us more and more in national 
guilt and sin. If they should wean us from our selfish- 
ness and absorbing greed of gain, if they should purify 
our public counsels and our private life, if they should 
promote the growth of mutual good feeling between 
states and sections, and of kindly courtesies between 
man and man, if they should bring judgment to the 
oppressed, and education and ultimate freedom to the 
enslaved, and cause all classes to value more highly the 
blessing of a good, paternal, wise administration of gov- 
ernment, then should we have occasion to count it all 
joy that we had fallen upon these evil times, seeing that 
they had resulted in a bountiful harvest of blessings to 
the nation and the world. 

Who can be so senseless as to ask for a restoration of 
" the union as it was ? " Establish it, indeed, with all its 
previous wealth of beauty and glory, but with as much 
more as may be possible. Fill it with all the elements 
of truth and liberty, humanity and benevolence, that 
can be breathed into it, and this time, if possible, make 
it immortal. 






26 



Nay ; I will go farther, and assert that the " union as it 
was " is impossible. ' A person has had the small pox and 
has recovered. But his system has undergone a radical 
change. The marks and scars of the foul contagion are 
upon him, but his body is no longer susceptible to that 
loathsome disease. He has not recovered his health "as 
it was," but is in a sounder condition than before. And 
when there has been a loathsome eruption upon the 
body politic, shall the radical evil be left uncured, only 
to break out again ? No, no ; let us not restore " the union 
as it was," with the same liability to be torn by treason 
and furrowed with the plowshare of war. Let us not 
restore to power and activity the same agencies that 
have proved so injurious heretofore, only to see them 
produce the same mischievous results again and again. 
From my heart I pray never to see the union again 
established u as it was " just before tMs rebellion took overt 
shape, placed in a condition for another imbecile Pres- 
ident to abandon it to its fate ; for another perjured 
Secretary to plunder and rob it, and for another nullify- 
ing State to openly insult and contemn its sovereignty. 
If there be, as we believe there is, one fundamental vice 
of society in all the rebellious States, which has chiefly 
tended to nurture this rebellion, and which has contin- 
ually given it life and excitement, shall we not attempt 
in some suitable and just manner, to weaken and re- 
move this evil, that it may harm and distract us no 
longer ? 

You know to what I refer ; and I feel no obligation of 






27 

delicacy, leading me to refrain from touching briefly upon 
the domestic slavery of the seceded States in this con- 
nection. They cherish it because it supports that aristo- 
cratic social system, which they have deliberately chosen, 
and are confessedly fighting for. We reject and oppose 
it, because it is subversive of all business prosperity, is a 
curse to the State which upholds it, an unspeakable in- 
jury to the colored people themselves, and a still greater 
injury to their masters. And although in our military 
movements, as such, we have nothing to do with this 
institution, we are in fact procuring and producing its 
overthrow. We have not introduced the negro into this 
war. But he is in it, and in every part of it, and can no 
more be expelled from it than leaven can be removed 
from the loaf that has begun to ferment. Would that a 
purified government might escape this annoyance and 
disturbance in all time to come. Would that one rebel- 
lion in the interest of this wretched, wasteful, and worth- 
less system of labor might prove sufficient. Would that 
all at the South and at the North would examine negro 
slavery, not with fanatical zeal, but with calm, considerate 
attention, and agree together to put an end to it by grad- 
ual and compensated emancipation, as a harbinger and 
hostage of our peace, and a blessed deliverance both to 
the master and the slave. 

When this war shall cease, and a settlement be made 
of the various matters at issue between the two sections, 
it will come to pass that a better understanding will prevail 
betiveen them than ever before. The South has greatly mis- 



28 

understood the North. The few, who, by their social 
position, give tone to public opinion here, have mali- 
ciously belied the North, in order to foster a state of 
feeling that might lead to a separation. But the inter- 
course of warfare will do something, and the intercourse 
of peace yet more, to dispel delusions, to abolish facti- 
tious distinctions, and to equalize the social status of the 
Puritan and the Cavalier. There are those in this army 
who never will settle again in New England, to reside 
there permanently, but will enter upon some of these 
uncultivated tracts of land, do something to develop 
the neglected resources of this broad section of country, 
and thus come, with blessings in their hands, to the peo- 
ple of the South. The States now vainly attempting to 
establish a separate independence, will become truly in- 
dependent, and truly great, when, giving up their aristo- 
cratic notions, they begin to stimulate//*^ labor , establish 
free schools, call out the energies of all classes by elevat- 
ing, rather than depressing them, and level up society to 
a standard of general intelligence and thrift. Herein, 
and in no other possible course, is to be found their salva- 
tion as commonwealths. By this course only can they 
recover from the terrible prostration resulting from this 
war. This is the kind of " subjugation " we wish to im- 
pose upon them, namely, an exaltation and blessing, a 
dignity and wealth of civilization, to which they have 
been heretofore strangers. 

I am inclined to take a hopeful view of the future. 
And in a comparatively short space of time, I seem to see 



29 

this shameful political apostasy annihilated, and the 
whole land consenting, either willingly or unwillingly, to 
one grand central government. Under the new stimu- 
lus imparted to all its industries, by the returning de- 
mands of peace, I see every wheel, spindle, and pinion 
again revolving, and the nation, as a nation, learning 
war no more. With a considerable standing army, 
yet maintained to promote the common security and 
confidence, I behold the multitude of our teeming pop- 
ulation going forward to possess the land, and covering 
with beautiful villages and cities the slopes and hillsides 
and plains of our goodly domain. 

By a system of compensated emancipation in part, and 
in part by the fortunes of war, I hear liberty proclaimed 
throughout the land unto all the inhabitants thereof. 
Going forward in the steps of a free and Christian 
civilization, I see my countrymen attaining to a purer, 
nobler personal life, and thus laying the foundations 
of national distinction in the beautiful virtues of indi- 
vidual character. I see our government, having sur- 
vived the shock of war, and having maintained both 
the form and spirit of a democracy, while other nations 
in similar circumstances had relapsed into a military 
despotism, still leading all the governments of Christen- 
dom in a grand career of political distinction, still at- 
tracting towards herself the admiring gaze of mankind. 
Having maintained her financial credit in a wonderful 
manner, in the day of her trial and calamity, and when 
brow-beaten by transatlantic nations, and threatened 



30 

with an intervention which she neither needed nor 
desired, I see her unfurling her flag of forty or fifty 
bright stars, before the eyes of Franc 3 and England, 
from the masthead of more vessels than their com- 
bined navies and mercantile marine can boast, and 
disputing with her own mother country the title of 
"mistress of the seas." And as ages roll on, and her 
population increases, her debt is extinguished, her wealth 
accumulates, her cities grow numerous, and her churches, 
asylums, colleges, and schools may be counted by hun- 
dreds of thousands, we shall still behold in her unex- 
ampled greatness the influence of her present trials, and 
new evidence of the exceeding goodness of God unto 
her. May the brazen throats that to-day echo her 
praises, and the star-spangled banners that stream 
above her soil, be ever the bulwarks of her liberty, 
the defenses of her manhood, and the dread of tyrants 
whether at home or abroad. 






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